Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Is Banquo's Son YA or Adult Fiction?

In a list called 'our pick of perfect books for someone you care about this christmas', the reviewer says this: A dark and mysterious hero, tortured romance, a choice between love and honour... all the ingredients for a rollicking teen read feature in Banquo's Son, in which author Tania Roxborogh (rebranded "T.K. Roxborogh") imagines the fate of Fleance, the son of the murdered Scottish thane in Banquo in Shakespeare's Macbeth.

Both my publisher are I are bemused that reviewers seek to pigeon hole the book in a category. I assume it's because I am mostly known as a children's/YA writer and that some of the characters are in their late teens, that they see this as a YA book.

It's not. It's just a great story which I know thousands of people, all ages, both male and female, have read and thoroughly enjoyed.

Below is an extract I received recently from a law professor in his sixties:

I have wanted to let you know how much I and Jan have enjoyed reading your book. I could not withhold from Jan my continuous expressions of delight and enjoyment as I read it... and, for being pulled in a different dramatic direction, less intimately with Macbeath among Shakespeare's plays.

As I read your book, I was reminded, over and over again, of T. H. White's Once and Future King, but I think I respect your work more for the strongly structured form it takes - a playwright's presentation, I would think, and so a testament to Shakespeare as is apt, rather than a story or history, since however much I love your love story, it is as you say not only so, but also about duty and honour. So what excites me is the architecture of your book, its width and depth and promise of continued extension.


Pen said...

My friend and I both read Banquo's son and had a really long talk about whether we thought it was YA or not. (lol!)

I really enjoyed it but I confess I do think it reads more like YA than an adult historical novel, like say, Sharron Pennman's work.

Not that this is necessarily a bad thing, I read a lot of YA.

I think it might be that your writing "voice" just has that tone about it or that the story was not as gritting (read blood and guts)or as sexy as adult readers might have expected it to be perhaps. Just I thought. What do you think?

Keep up the good work. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Tania. I've read Banquo's Son and enjoyed it.Well done. I agree with Pen's comments as to it reading YA. Also I found your modern terms of phrase: eg. 'that's not your brief.' 'your own demons' and 'make or earn a living.' made the book more of a YA read.
Keep up the good work, I'm looking forward to reading Bloodlines.

Melinda Szymanik said...

Sorry to interrupt but I've just nominated you for a blogging award over at my blog :)